Join the Band!
This photo-essay attempts to get readers fired up about music by showing them real kids in a real upper-elementary school band. While admirable in concept, Pillar's work is flawed in execution. Told from the point of view of a beginning flutist, the text flows smoothly enough, leading readers through a broad overview of the group and its activities (``Practice, practice, practice!'') and culminating with a spring concert. Unfortunately, many of the photographs are out of focus and/or improperly lit; consequently the book has an amateurish look, not unlike that of a home movie. Also, although there are sporadic flashes of joy on the faces of the (largely Caucasian) band members, on the whole the group appears to be fairly solemn--an effect that undermines the attempt to illustrate how much fun playing an instrument can be. Ages 6-8. (Jan.)